Houses of Parliament
- Type: Sightseeing
- Time to Spend: 1 to 2 hours
|About these ratings|
The Houses of Parliament, comprised of the House of Lords and the House of Commons, fill the more than 1,000-room Palace of Westminster. If you're not interested in sneaking a peek at the political process (and all the traditions that go with it), admiring the iconic structure from afar is still a quintessential London to-do. The Lambeth Bridge provides a superb vantage point for photos, especially at night. While here, you also might want to snap a picture with another traveler favorite: Big Ben, the giant clock tower.
However, many recent visitors say a tour of the elaborate building (which you can attend when Parliament is on recess—see the website for the most up-to-date information) is worth the experience. One TripAdvisor user says, "Absolutely fascinating in all respects and some of the interiors are gloriously over the top in color and gilding. Every corner having something of historic interest." The guided tour lasts about 75 minutes, and includes such highlights as the Commons and Lords Chambers, the Queen's Robing Room, the Royal Gallery, and Westminster Hall. If you're in town while Parliament is in session, you might want to sit in on a debate; schedule these through your embassy.
Tours take place on Saturdays from 9:15 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., and six days a week during the summer. Adults pay £15 GBP (about $24 USD), youths 5-15 cost £6 GBP (approximately $10 USD), and children under 5 enter for free. You can reach the Houses of Parliament by taking the District, Circle, or Jubilee Tube lines.